Thursday, 15 August 2019

Herbal Ashwagandha Arrests Ovarian Cancer in Vitro

By Kyle J. Norton

Cancer is the class of medical diseases characterized by irregular cell growth in the tissue or specific organ in the body due to the alternation of cell DNA.

The ovaries formed part of women reproductive system are the reproductive organs that connect to the fallopian tubes and attaches to the outer layer of the uterus via the ovarian ligament. Usually, the left and right ovary take a turn to release an egg every month in the mid-point of each menstrual cycle.

Furthermore, the ovaries also produce the female hormones estrogen and progesterone.

Ovarian cancer is medical a condition caused by abnormal cells growth of ovarian cells that start on the surface of the inner lining of the ovary. Over time, the oversize tumor can travel a distance away to infect the nearby organ and tissue via the fluid and blood circulation.

Ovarian cancer is one of the fifth most common cancer, accounting for more deaths than any other cancer of the female reproductive system in the US, according to the statistics. The lifetime risk of getting ovarian cancer is a woman is about 1 in 78, comapred to the lifetime of dying from ovarian cancer risk of 1 in 108.

The causes of ovarian cancer are not cleanly defined. However, epidemiologically, family history, BRCA genetic preposition, never being pregnant or giving birth, tall adult height, hormone replacement therapy, smoking, exposure to asbestos are some prevalent factors found in patients with the disease.

Most common symptoms of ovarian cancer are abdominal bloating, pressure in the pelvis or lower back, a frequent or urgent need to urinate and/or constipation, changes in bowel movements and increased abdominal girth accompanied by general symptoms shared by other types of cancer.

The epithelial ovarian tumor is the most common form of ovarian cancer that is arisen from the cell on the surface of the ovary, accounting over 90% of ovarian cancer of all cases, including serious tumor, endometrioid tumor, and mucinous cystadenocarcinoma.

Germ cell ovarian cancer found in the a censer of the egg-producing cells within the ovary and sex cord-stromal ovarian cancer that occur in children and teens as a result of birth defects are 2 other types of ovarian cancer.

Ashwagandha also is known as Withania somnifera is a nightshade plant in the genus of Withania, belonging to the family Solanaceae, native to the dry parts of India, North Africa, Middle East, and the Mediterranean. The herbal medicine has been considered as Indian ginseng and used in Ayurvedic medicine over 3000 years to treat tumors and tubercular glands, carbuncles, memory loss, and ulcers and considered as anti-stress, cognition-facilitating, anti-inflammatory, and anti-aging herbal medicine.

With an aim to find a potential compound for the treatment of ovarian cancer with no side effects, researchers investigated the effects withaferin A (WFA), a bioactive compound isolated from the plant Withania somnifera, when used alone or in combination with cisplatin (CIS) on chemo-resistance of cancer stem cells (CSCs).

The study included nude mice bearing orthotopic ovarian tumors generated by injecting human ovarian epithelial cancer cell line (A2780), administration of WFA and cisplatin (WFA) alone or in combination, showed a 70 to 80% reduction in tumor growth and complete inhibition of metastasis, compared to untreated controls.

WFA (2 mg/kg) injection resulted in a highly significant elimination of cells expressing CSC markers such as genes associated with cell to cell interaction, growth and differentiation signaling, and cell proliferation.

Furthermore, genes involved in cancer promotion, metastasis, and multidrug resistance and proliferation are also inhibited by the WFA, compared to no effect of mice treated with CIS alone (6 mg/kg). 

In other words, CIS alone (6 mg/kg) inhibited CSC without affecting the aforementioned genes. These may explain the recurrence of cancer in patients treated with carboplatin and paclitaxel.

Based on the findings, researchers said, "WFA alone or in combination with CIS eliminates putative CSCs, we conclude that WFA in combination with CIS may present more efficacious therapy for ovarian cancer".

Taken altogether, Ashwagandha may be considered a functional herb for the prevention and an adjunct therapy combined with the primary medicine for the treatment of ovarian cancer, pending to the confirmation of larger sample size and multicenter human study.

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Author Biography
Kyle J. Norton (Scholar, Master of Nutrition, All right reserved)

Health article writer and researcher; Over 10.000 articles and research papers have been written and published online, including worldwide health, ezine articles, article base, health blogs, self-growth, best before it's news, the karate GB daily, etc.,.
Named TOP 50 MEDICAL ESSAYS FOR ARTISTS & AUTHORS TO READ by Named 50 of the best health Tweeters Canada - Huffington Post
Nominated for shorty award over last 4 years
Some articles have been used as references in medical research, such as international journal Pharma and Bioscience, ISSN 0975-6299.

(1) Dietary supplementation of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera, Dunal) enhances NK cell function in ovarian tumors in the laying hen model of spontaneous ovarian cancer by Barua A1, Bradaric MJ, Bitterman P, Abramowicz JS, Sharma S, Basu S, Lopez H, Bahr JM. (PubMed)
(2) Withaferin a alone and in combination with cisplatin suppresses growth and metastasis of ovarian cancer by targeting putative cancer stem cells by Kakar SS1, Ratajczak MZ2, Powell KS3, Moghadamfalahi M4, Miller DM2, Batra SK5, Singh SK. (PubMed)

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